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The St. George Serbian Orthodox Church in Carmichaels, Pennsylvania hosted four parishes for the Pittsburgh Deanery Vespers on March 25, 2018, the Fifth Sunday of Great Lent.

Deanery parishes grouped with St. George Church include those located in Steubenville, Ohio; Aliquippa, Midland and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Fairmont, West Virginia.

The Pittsburgh Deanery is part of the Eastern American Diocese. His Grace Bishop IRINEJ is the Diocesan Bishop. Protopresbyter Stavrophor Rade Merick is Dean of the Pittsburgh Deanery. Very Rev. Presbyter Sasa Nedic was the host.

Additional Deanery clergy serving were Protopresbyter Stavrophor Rajko Kosic, Presbyter Dejan Barac and Presbyter Branislav Golic. Sonia Janson directed the St. George Choir’s responses.

Following the Vesper service, Father Dejan Barac was the featured speaker in the church hall. Father Barac gave a compelling and thoughtful presentation on the life of St. Mary of Egypt.

Stan Brozik, Parish Board President, welcomed the attendees. In addition to the parishes mentioned, faithful were present from McKeesport, Monroeville, and Youngwood. Members of the St. George Kolo served the Lenten meal.

The Deanery Vespers provide an opportunity for believers to be nourished and strengthened in the Lenten journey. The services and presentations are rich in content.

The Fifth Sunday of Great Lent focuses on repentance as exemplified in the life of St. Mary of Egypt. Repentance is an expected and necessary part of the Christian life.

Growth in Christ comes through repentance. Father Dejan Barac vividly depicted St. Mary’s journey from being an extensive sinner to becoming a memorable saint living fully in Christ.

The Church provides Great Lent each year for believers to repent and reject sin in their lives. Great Lent is a time of renewal in Christ. The serious journey to Pascha is a joyful experience.

Thank God for the St. George Church and each parish church in the Deanery holding the Lenten services. Thank God for the Deanery clergy and parish faithful exerting themselves to participate.

May the joy of Christ’s Resurrection abound in the parishes of the Pittsburgh Deanery and in other parish communities having Lenten services. May God reward the clergy and faithful working to host the Lenten services.

Article by Father Rodney Torbic

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